An Assassin in Orlandes

Data Break Up
Game: An Assassin in Orlandes
Genre: Adventure, Indie, RPG
Developer: Tin Man Games
Publisher: Tin Man Games
Release Date: May 12, 2015
Platform: PC / Windows 7
Overall rating:  9/10
Graphics: 9/10
Controls: 9/10
Level/Puzzle Design: 9/10
Sound: 8/10
Story: 8/10
Replay Value: 9/10
Community: N/A

An Assassin in Orlandes by Tin Man Games is a text adventure/choose your own adventure game that mixes the dice rolling of RPG with the path-choosing style of CYOA (Choose Your Own Adventure) books.

If you’ve read my previous review I’ll be repeating myself here, but: Mixing dice in with this means you will also be rolling for stats, and that most fights and encounters are purely luck based. That said, I quite enjoyed the mix of these two game styles, it makes for very interesting gameplay that mimics the board RPGs quite well, and reminds you very fondly of CYOA books.

If you’ve never read a CYOA book, it works like this: You reach a point in which you’re given two or more choices, and it indicates what page to turn to continue the story on the proper path. There are several different endings, some failure, some death, and a ‘true’ one.

Controls are simple: You just flip pages by clicking and click choices as they appear (some might be obscured if you are missing an item or certain knowledge, but otherwise you’re free to pick and choose). Should you need to, you have a bookmarking function to return to a previous point in the book, maps, etc.

At the start of the story you may also pick up the difficulty. Unlike The Forest of Doom, this one offers only two settings: A regular difficulty mode and a “casual” (cheat) one. The cheats are the same as in Forest: you can heal yourself or uncover options you might have not had otherwise, in order to get through the book.

The story is better written than in The Forest of Doom, though the main premise and how the character comes to be in troubles is still lacking a bit. Still, it’s a story I would definitely recommend for a younger audience. The fight style I found a bit more confusing than in the previous game, but it was otherwise equally luck based and mostly simple to learn.

The graphical aspect of the book was a bit more typical, but the images (in black and white) were so much nicer to look at, and the maps were also much better drawn.

Would I recommend it? Yes. But again, I’d recommend you grab it for at least half price.

Advertisements

The Forest of Doom

Data Break Up
Game: The Forest of Doom
Genre: Adventure, Indie, RPG
Developer: Tin Man Games
Publisher: Tin Man Games
Release Date: Oct 30, 2014
Platform: PC / Windows 7
Overall rating:  9/10
Graphics: 7/10
Controls: 10/10
Level/Puzzle Design: 9/10
Sound: 8/10
Story: 7/10
Replay Value: 10/10
Community: N/A

I have a soft spot in my heart for CYOA books, and this one totally took me to the past.

The Forest of Doom by Tin Man Games is a choose your own adventure (CYOA) game, and as such, you can expect it is only a text adventure and there will be no fancy graphics beyond an illustration or two along what’s essentially just a digital version of a book, with some extra interactive perks.

The Forest of Doom mixes typical CYOA gameplay with the dice rolling of RPG games to decide whether or not you win or pass certain encounters. This means you will also be rolling for stats, and you can get either really good or really bad ones, depending on your luck. I honestly quite enjoyed the mix of these two game styles, even if the fights and encounters ended up being completely luck based because of the dice.

If you’ve never read a CYOA book, it works like this: You reach a point in which you’re given two or more choices, and it indicates what page to turn to continue the story on the proper path. There are several different endings, some failure, some death, and a ‘true’ one. Some of the choices might be obscured if you’re lacking in knowledge or items.

Controls for this are pretty simple: You just flip pages by clicking and click choices as they appear. You have a bookmarking function to return to a previous point in the book,  plus maps, art, etc.

At the start of the story you may also pick what difficulty you want to play in. The Forest of Doom offers 3, a normal (or “medium”) difficulty, a harder difficulty, and a “free read” difficulty which allows you to cheat – you can heal yourself or uncover options you might have not had otherwise, in order to get through the entire book.

The story is fairly simple (you’re a warrior who -rather randomly- decides to help some dying dwarf fulfill his last duty), and while it might be predictable and might not be a literary achievement, I think it’s a great story that younger people would enjoy, even if the ending(s) are lacking a bit.

The graphics were good as far as backgrounds went, the art was pretty good with places, maps and areas, not so good with human figures.

The music was good, but repetitive and annoying at the moment of reading, so I muted it. But then, I 99% of the time mute music while playing.

The only real disappointing thing was that you could not backtrack without using free read and cheating, you chose a path, east, west, north, but could not return where you’d come from, and thus you could easily miss the things you needed for the good ending without a chance of ‘exploring’ for them.

I did encounter one bug while playing: though my steam settings specified English the game still started in Spanish; after it downloaded an update it was half in Spanish, half in English, and I had to go into settings and re-set them to English for the game to take it. It was a silly bug, small and didn’t deter from the actual gameplay, but annoying nonetheless.

All in all it was a fun, quick read, and it brought back plenty of nice memories, but better grab it when it’s on sale, as I don’t feel with the length it’s worth the full price.

Contamination by Jamie Thornton

Contamination (Feast of Weeds, #2)Contamination by Jamie Thornton

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

A free copy of this book was received in exchange for an honest opinion.

I read the first book in this series and it was a pretty decent book. This second one has a lot going for it as well: the take on the ‘zombie’ genre is slightly different than the norm, not much, but just enough to make you curious; what I could see of the plot that was apparently going on in the background seemed interesting, which is why I bumped it one start to “it’s ok” rating; but the thing is, the book seems more about the characters and their past/complex love relationships than about the things that were happening to them at the time – which is fine, I guess, except that in this book I just couldn’t like any of the characters.
The main character seemed rather dysfunctional, and not in an overly interesting way, her original love interested seemed like a bit of a pushover/ass (I can’t quite decide), and someway half through I just lost all interest in the story because although things were happening, it wasn’t what I would have considered the “interesting” parts that the book focused on.

After a while of having it sitting there and not wanting to pick it back up, I’m going to give it as a loss and mark it as abandoned.

View all my reviews

star_full (48)star_full (48)star_none (48)star_none (48)star_none (48)

Get the rest of this series:

Germination by Jamie Thornton

Germination (Feast of Weeds, #1)Germination by Jamie Thornton
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I won Germination at a giveaway in exchange for a review.

I liked it. I’m not much of a fan of neither first person nor diary/blog posts/etc kind of stories, but the bits of ‘posts’ were only the start of chapters, so it wasn’t such a bother. The writing style was good; I wasn’t very sure at first, but after the first part the story picked up… and although it’s such a short story that you can’t really tell just what’s going on exactly, it is an interesting introduction and I can see possibilities with it. I’m interested enough about what will happen to keep on reading, that’s for sure.

View all my reviews

star_full (48)star_full (48)star_full (48)star_none (48)star_none (48)

Get the rest of this series:

Fire by Kristin Cashore

Fuego (Los Siete Reinos, #2)Fire by Kristin Cashore
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I found it rather disappointing, the end felt a bit rushed and the addition of the one “bad guy” made no sense (as in, I felt the story would’ve worked just the same without it, and it was pointless and forgotten for more than half the book, or should have been played with more to make it more interesting).
I can’t say I liked the main character either, I found I felt more for minor characters than for her.

I enjoyed her first book much more.
I didn’t dislike Fire, though, it just wasn’t as good as I expected of it.

View all my reviews

 

star_full (48)star_full (48)star_none (48)star_none (48)star_none (48)